Do you want to – OR – do you not want to?
You can’t eat the cake and keep it!
Seems clear, or are there doubts? Or are opposites and alternatives not necessarily mutually exclusive after all?
In conflictsituations, people are constantly asking each other to decide between one or the other. German hardly allows for any other option. The strength of German is its clarity of description, which also makes it the language of great philosophers.
However, from a psychological point of view, things cannot always be clearly segregated, mainly regarding emotions. I can be attracted and repelled by something or someone simultaneously. I can love someone fiercely and not be able to stand his/her presence at the same time.
Years ago, I read that biblical Hebrew has many more possibilities to put opposites in the right proportion.
I hope that in coaching, we succeed in dealing with emotional opposites so that the people who experience them can deal with them in a good and balanced way and integrate them into their lives instead of suffering from them.
I am interested in what possibilities others languages or dialects have to deal with emotional facets of events incompatible in High German in a differentiated way. I would be delighted to receive comments on this topic.
I am Eberhard Bohrisch, a systemic psychologist and one of the few active coaches with more than 50 years of professional experience.